Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Twice Around

By Len Bose

Last night I attended the Harbor Commission meeting with my normal reluctance to leave the house just before dinner as my family gathered around the dinner table. Taking my usual seat in the back of the chambers my routine is to look to see who is in attendance in the audience. I only started attending the meeting last November when I started writing this column and I am starting to recognize the regulars. Last night while scanning the room, I noticed a face, but it took me a little while to notice who it was. I thought to myself, “Cool, that’s our harbormaster Lieutenant Mark Long in his civvies rather than in full uniform. Wow, this guy is going the extra mile.” I don’t know about you, but it's a lot easier to talk to a person that is not in full uniform, wearing a bulletproof vest, radio and gun. I am starting to like this guy approach.

Tonight, Lieutenant Long will be speaking at the Balboa Yacht Club in regards to the ongoing challenges of the proper Harbor Operations staffing and the Harbor Patrol’s role in homeland security. I highly recommend you attend tonight’s program. I am quite confident you will be glad you did. The buffer dinner starts at 1800 hours [6 p.m] and 1930 [7:30] for the harbormaster Long presentation. BYC is Located at 1801 Bayside Drive in Corona del Mar and their phone number is (949) 673-3515.

There are three wind shifts coming down the course that need your attention. The first shift is the sealion citation time frame, shift No. 2 is the Marina Park Phase III plan and shift No. 3 is the Proposed Statewide Coastal Marina Permit. Last night the Harbor Commission requested City Council to tighten the time frame of one warning letter to remove the sealions and place the proper deterrents on your vessel, or move your boat to a new location within seven days. If you cannot complete this task, the city will send you a citation. Overall this is a good idea. To me it would make more sense to call the boat owners, and send out the notice. If the boat owner is out of town, the city should have three phone numbers of clean-up crews that can help the out-of-town boat owners. Something to remember as a boat owner is to leave a second phone number with Sally at the mooring office. Nothing would be worse than returning home from vacation and having thousands of dollars of damage to your boat from the sealions and a ticket from the city. Now, wouldn’t that be special!

Wind shift No. 2 – Marina Park Phase III. This story reminds me of the time when a couple of yacht clubs in town had the opportunity to purchase the marina next to them. One club followed through and took the chance of purchasing the property in hard times. The other club felt it was not wise to spend the money in those times. I’ll give you one guess on who made the right decision? This is how I see the Marina Park plan Phase I, II & III. If we don't show our support at the city council meeting on May 11 for Phase III of the Marina Park Plan, I can see us standing in the sand with our tillers in our hands 10 years from now thinking of how it could have been. This one goes right along side of dredging the lower bay; we need everyone to show up at this council meeting.

Wind Shift No. 3. This one concerns the Proposed Statewide Coastal Marina Permit. I'm not sure which example fits best, although two things come to mind when this subject is brought to my attention. One example is there is a clearing westerly breeze coming down the course and I had better shorten sail and place everyone on the rail to make it around the weather mark in good shape. My other example would be if my wife notified me that my mother-in-law was moving into the house! This one I would just get the ditch bag and deploy the life raft and it would be too late for the flares. I could write pages about what this proposal is from the water board. If you have no idea what I am talking about and you fear the fact that your mother in-law is moving in you better go read the information on the RBOC web site at www.rboc.org/call_to_arms.html. Contact your local reps. The harbor commission is forwarding a position letter to council for review, which the council will forward to the state. You might just get thrown out of the boat if you don't act on this one.

It looks like there is a long hard weather beat in front of us and we better start changing gears if we want the long downwind run to the finish!

Sea ya'
Len Bose

Len Bose is a contributing writer to the Daily Voice and owner of Len Bose Yacht Sales.

Friday, March 12, 2010

“Who Dat,” “Who Dat” Sailing To Cabo?

By Len Bose

The entry deadline for the 2010 Corona del Mar to Cabo San Lucas International Yacht Race is today, Monday, Feb. 1. With the entry list almost doubling last year’s 2009 Cabo race you can’t help saying to yourself, “Who dat” and “Who Dat” when looking down this year’s entry list.

This being my 29th yacht race to Cabo, I do happen to recognize most of the entries, but I’m just amazed at the amount of entries the Balboa Yacht Club has gathered to attended this event. HATS OFF to General Chairman Paul Loubet and Entry Chairman Chris Hemans, well done GUYS and good luck Becky and Don!

So “Who Dat” going to the winner circle this year? Or who are this year’s favorites? It isn’t going to be easy to guess who is going to be the first to finish, or who the elapsed time winner will be. In one corner you have the boys from “Magnitude 80” and owner Doug Baker. Baker donated “Mag 80” to Orange Coast College last year and has elected to charter the R/P 78 “Akela” this year. In the other corner you have Alan Briety Reichel-Pugh 63 “Limit” who finished in fifth place in this year’s Sydney to Hobart race. Now, if we are lucky, the long awaited 72’ PendragonV might even be attending. Blend this altogether with the “Iboat Tracker” http://www.iboattrack.com/racetracking.html and this race will be better to watch than the upcoming America’s Cup. Of course one rule of thumb in a Mexico race is, “the race is never over until the fat lady sings.”

Let’s have a look at the seven 70 raters entered this year. The 70 raters are the old Santa Cruz 70, Andrews 68 and Peterson 68 that are going and we haven’t had these entries since the late ‘80s. This will be an extremely fun class to watch and should be a very close race, as any one of them could win it. Peter Tong’s OEX has to be the favorite in this class because of its win in last year’s Transpac. The OEX crew has been sailing together for as long has I can remember which makes it that much more fun to watch. Not knowing exactly where the class splits will maker it even more interesting. I will have to assume the Transpac 52s will be mixed in with the 70s, and one very fast and well-sailed Reichel-Pugh 45 Criminal Mischief can easily be the giant killer. I’m assuming Elvis will be onboard! This alone will be some of the best yacht racing on this coast in years.

I’ll be sailing on the Santa Cruz 50 Flaca this year, and we’ll have our hands full with the seven other 50-footers in our class. I’m going to stick my neck out on this one and say that the yacht Morpheus Schumacher 50 from the Bay Area will be the boat to beat. I have raced this boat down the cost a number of times and this crew is not known to make many mistakes.

Now the real money maker of this entire event is the amount of entrees in the 40-foot class. Thirteen boats will be racing in this class, and I don’t recall ever seeing a healthier aspect for local sailing. This is absolutely fantastic, and in my option, this is a very positive sign for our sport. With 13 very closely rated boats, this will be the class to keep your eyes on. I would have to guess the J 125 Reinrag2 is the favorite, and if the Garniers can pull a win off in this fleet they should get a front row parking place at their yacht club. This fleet is “locked and loaded” with Tim Fuller and his new J 125 “Resolute.” Rumor has it the boat has been out of the water in Marina Del Rey getting the twice over. Dr. Laura Schlessinger will have her J 125 “Warrior” ready and the old J 125 I used to sail on “Derivative” Ex Lucky Dog will be on the starting line. I heard Peter Heck would be on the Far 40 “Temptress,” along with the giant killer of this class – Richard Mainland Ross on 40 “Paddy Wagon.”

I plan on reporting back a couple of times before the event. You have to mark your calendars for this one. For those of you not going, well that’s too bad, because you’ll be missing one epic race.

Sea ya’
Len Bose

Len Bose is the owner of Len Bose Yacht Sales.